Updates on Extremism and the Law
Federal agents arrested Christopher Lee Cornell, of Green Township, Ohio, in connection with a plot to attack the U.S. Capitol. Cornell allegedly told an informant that he supported the Islamic State, “considered members of Congress as enemies,” and intended to “detonate pipe bombs at and near the U.S. Capitol, then use firearms to shoot and kill employees and officials.” Cornell, 20, called Cincinnati’s WXIX-TV in early March to reiterate his support for the terrorist group and say that he would have shot President Obama had he not been caught.
Loudoun County sheriff’s detectives arrested Dallas W. Brumback on a charge of attempted capital murder, accusing the 35-year-old Sterling, Va., man of making a $5,000 deal with a hit man to murder his ex-wife. Brumback is an alleged Ku Klux Klan sympathizer who in July 2012 helped organize a “whites-only” gathering in Birmingham, Ala. He also claimed to be a “pastor” with the virulently racist and anti-Semitic Christian Identity Ministries.
Three members of the United Aryan Empire, a nascent white supremacist gang based in Pendleton, Ore., were arraigned at the Umatilla, Ore., County Courthouse. The group’s founder, Jeremiah Mauer, 30, was arrested Jan. 10. Two other gang members, Gregory Tinnell, 43, and Warren Gerald Browning, 35, were arrested soon after. Each face one count of racketeering, two counts of conspiracy to commit murder for a 2014 shooting, one count of second-degree assault and riot, and four counts of being a felon in possession of firearms, among other charges.
Police arrested two more people in connection with the April 2014 ax murder of Joshua Calkins, a former member of the Aryan Brotherhood gang whose mutilated body was found in Phoenix, Ariz., last spring. Brenna Maas, Calkins’ former girlfriend and a suspected associate of the Brotherhood, is alleged to have “green-lit” Calkins’ murder, and Charles Robbins is said to have helped dispose of his remains. The accused killer, Christopher Mason, was arrested in December.
Pamela Morris, former secretary of a Ku Klux Klan chapter based in Ozark, Ala., was sentenced to 10 months in federal prison and three years of supervised release for committing perjury during a grand jury’s investigation into a cross burning committed by her son, Steven Joshua Dinkle, and Thomas Smith. Morris, 47, lied when she said she was not a Klan member and did not know Dinkle and Smith had burned the cross near the entrance to a mostly black neighborhood.
FBI agents arrested Jonathan Leo Schrader, of Elkins, W.Va., on charges of possessing stolen explosives that he intended to use in attacks on a federal courthouse, a local festival, and a bank. Officials said Schrader, 30, “regularly espouses venomous antigovernment, anti-law enforcement rhetoric,” and planned to use C-4 explosives and a half-stick of dynamite found at his home. He also allegedly plotted to use a sniper rifle to shoot first responders.
A man who allegedly plotted to shoot President Obama the next time he appeared in Kansas City, Mo., was charged in U.S. District Court in Jefferson City, Missouri’s capital. An informant who once belonged to the Aryan Nations told law enforcement officials that Cameron James Stout, 24, of Stover, Mo., had sought help from the white supremacist group in obtaining a rifle and planning the attack.
A Lincoln County, N.C., man who allegedly sought to form a militia to battle local law enforcement because officers looking for him searched his daughter’s home (with her permission) was arrested and charged with felony probation violation and misdemeanor resisting, delaying and obstructing a police officer, along with communicating threats. Timothy Lee Cornwell, 45, allegedly wrote on Facebook that he knew where officers were and was willing to “kill for his rights.”
A U.S. Air Force veteran who was recently fired from his private-sector job as an airplane mechanic in Kuwait pleaded not guilty to federal charges of attempting to provide material support to a terrorist organization, obstruction and attempted obstruction of an official proceeding. Tairod Nathan Webster Pugh, 47, of Neptune, N.J., was stopped at the Turkish border en route to Syria, where he allegedly planned to join the Islamic State in its brutal terrorist campaign.